Traveling with Alzheimer’s

Summer vacations may be a few months behind us, but travel will be ramping up in the next couple months as we start to celebrate the holidays with visits to family, friends and loved ones. For our aging loved ones suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia, visiting friends and family can be a difficult task, causing confusion and uncertainty as their environment and surroundings change.

In their Fall & Winter 2012 newsletter, the Alzheimer’s Association Desert Southwest Chapter provided travel tips for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia, and how loved ones and caregivers can help make the traveling experience smoother. Here are some major points from the article:

  • When traveling, try to stick to the normal routine. This can be difficult when visiting new places, but something as simple as eating at a dining table rather than a crowded restaurant can make a big difference for an Alzheimer’s patient.
  • Travel to familiar places, especially destinations that were known to the person with Alzheimer’s prior to the disease’s onset.
  • Evaluate travel options that best fit the individual’s needs. For instance, avoid late afternoon travel if this time of the day increases agitation. Also, consider what the least stressful mode of transportation would be i.e. planes vs. trains vs. automobiles.
  • Pack a bag of essentials that include the following: medications, travel itinerary, change of clothes, water, snacks, activities, up-to-date medical information, emergency contacts, and copies of important legal documents.
  • Be realistic and allow for plenty of time for rest and extra time between activities.

Remember, plans may change with the needs of the individual with Alzheimer’s or dementia, so be prepared to adapt to changing situations. At Cypress HomeCare Solutions, we strive to help you find solutions that best meet you and your loved one’s needs. If you need assistance or have any questions, give our trained solutions specialists a call at 602-264-8009.

Posted on October 18, 2012